No relief for Magpies' attack - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

No relief for Magpies' attack

By Sam Lienert 21/05/2009 06:34:52 PM Comments (0)

Struggling Collingwood have regained ruckman Josh Fraser to take on West Coast star big man Dean Cox, but there is no help at hand for their severely undermanned attack.

The Magpies welcome back Fraser for Saturday night's Subiaco clash with the Eagles, after a knee injury caused him to miss the thrashing handed out by Carlton last weekend.

But hopes that an injury-depleted and underperforming forward line might be boosted were dashed, with Paul Medhurst, Alan Didak, Dale Thomas and Anthony Rocca all failing to prove their fitness.

Key forward Travis Cloke also remains sidelined by a hamstring injury, meaning the Magpies will again be forced to field the attack that has managed a total of just 12 goals in the past two rounds

Along with Fraser, young defender Tyson Goldsack was recalled, with Anthony Corrie and Dayne Beams dropped from the side that failed to compete with the Blues.

The Eagles will be boosted by the return of gun midfielder Daniel Kerr, who missed last round's narrow loss to Sydney with a groin injury.

Geelong made two huge gains for Friday night's big Etihad Stadium clash with the Western Bulldogs, with star midfielder Gary Ablett and half-forward Paul Chapman both back from injury.

The Cats also recalled forward Ryan Gamble and defender David Johnson.

But they will be without suspended key forward Cameron Mooney, while veteran defender Darren Milburn and running player Shannon Byrnes were forced out by injury.

Tall utility Tom Lonergan was dropped, despite having been a possible option to cover Mooney's absence in attack.

The Bulldogs were hit hard by injury, losing star forward Robert Murphy, along with young defenders Andrejs Everitt and Dylan Addison.

But they regained talented midfielder Shaun Higgins from an adductor injury, while recalling Tim Callan and Callan Ward.

North Melbourne welcomed back three important midfielders for Saturday's match against Fremantle at Etihad Stadium.

Daniel Wells, Brady Rawlings and Jack Ziebell all return from injuries which caused them to miss last week's thumping by Geelong at Skilled Stadium, with Rawlings and Wells both late withdrawals from that game.

The Dockers named midfielder-forward Des Headland for what will be his first game of the season, after overcoming a calf injury.

Headland was also restricted to just six games last season because of a knee injury.

Carlton kept the same team that thrashed Collingwood for Saturday's AAMI Stadium meeting with Adelaide.

The Crows made two changes, recalling big man Ivan Maric and tagger Robert Shirley in place of Jared Petrenko and Brent Reilly, although Shirley needed to win an appeal against a SANFL suspension to take his place.

Brisbane will be forced to try to combat St Kilda key forwards Nick Riewoldt and Justin Koschitzke at Etihad Stadium on Sunday without key defenders Daniel Merrett and Joel Patfull, both forced out after being injured against Adelaide last weekend.

The Saints were yet to make any omissions from their 25-man squad, with running player Jason Gram keeping his spot despite concerns over a thigh injury.

Melbourne welcomed back star midfielder Brad Green, along with tall defenders Jared Rivers and James Frawley and ruckman Mark Jamar, all returning from injury to their squad to play Hawthorn at the MCG on Sunday.

The Hawks had made no cuts from the side which downed Fremantle last round.

Sydney and Port Adelaide were both also yet to make any omissions from their squads ahead of their encounter at the SCG on Sunday.

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